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You And Yours...utter Utter Failure To Ask The Pertinent Question

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Woke up with a hangover yesterday, was chivvied out of bed as I'd promised the wife I'd take her to get her beauty treatments done. Sat there in the car waiting for her with Radio 4 on. I should probably have turned to one of the many pirate house music stations I have on preset when You And Yours came on, but I got sucked in. She hopped back in the car about 12.15, we set off and got stuck in an entirely avoidable traffic jam, and just as we cleared it, Y.A.Y. started this classic piece (listen from 26.20 onwards):

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b038hjd9

For 8 minutes I listened with increasing levels of fury bubbling up in me, and when they moved on to take some comment on bloody caravans or some such irrelevant crap I'm ashamed to say I lost it- shouted and ranted in the car, floored it to get home quick so I could send them an email asking WTF?! I'm generally someone who doesn't get angry, just calmly bears a grudge forever, but on this occasion the wife was actually a bit frightened by my uncharacteristic rage I think, which I'm sorry about.

For anyone who CBA to listen to it, it was a piece about how pubs with late licenses are now in danger of having them revoked, or operating hours reduced, because late night drinkers are getting their phones/purses etc. nicked, which flags the pub in question up as a crime hotspot.

I personally think it's a disgrace that the police can get pubs which seem to attract unusual levels of drunken disorder shut down- because as I see it dealing with same is, y'know, their job. About 10 years ago I was drinking in a pub about a mile from my house- a Wetherspoons, I'm almost certain- when some silly ******* decided to kick off and spill a bunch of glasses from the rack above the bar all over the place. We took that as our cue to leave, wandered out to the 'beer garden' (I.E. the bit of concrete fronting onto the main road) and enjoyed the sight of about two dozen cops spilling out of Catford nick 200 yards away and running up the road as fast as their fat little legs would carry them. Of course as they puffed past me I told them who to look for, but they didn't seem interested. A year later the pub was closed; now it's a development of shitty can't-swing-a-cat 'affordable rent' two bed flats. Now I suppose I should be glad about more homes- however crap- being built, but in all honesty I wouldn't live there and I'd far rather still have the boozer.

But now apparently it's gone beyond that, and so the few pubs that remain can now be shut down or have their license restricted to the extent that it makes them commercially unviable just because their patrons are too stupid to not leave their phones on the table while they go to the bog. At this juncture I will admit that I have been lucky enough to leave my phone unattended once and had it snatched by an honest member of staff who got it back to me. But even if it had been nicked and never seen again, I wouldn't have ever imagined that reporting it stolen and mentioning the establishment that the crime took place could in the near future result in the pub being at risk of losing its licence.

So my questions are:

1) When exactly did we become such a pathetic risk-averse country?

2) Were the people who had their phones nicked asked when they reported the crime "is your ideal outcome having the pub shut down so that in future you have to drink at home"?

3) If the police succeed in shutting all the crime hotspots down, will they celebrate that success by cutting a commensurate number of their employees?

4) is their ever a hope in hell of getting You And Yours to ask the first three questions?

Quite honestly I may well be a silly hard of thinking idiot, so if I've gone wrong somewhere I'd be delighted to be set right, it'll be easier than sucking up the fact that our country is governed and policed by lazy, self-serving twats.

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It's always nice to find someone even more angry and emotive than myself.

Makes me feel more..... normal :)

Never mind that...I've never been normal. Am I wrong, or what?

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Through my lifetime (I'm 37) I've noticed a trend towards a more 'collectivist' viewpoint in this country.

It's difficult to talk about this sort of stuff without being misunderstood because a lot of the language has been co-opted by political types either as a label to positively misrepresent what they're selling, or as a label to negatively misrepresent what the other guy's selling, but I'll try anyway.

You've got two philosophical extremes in terms of the social control that we all as a whole exert (or wish to exert) upon those around us;

1.) The rugged individualist viewpoint - Ayn Rand is usually quoted as the best exponent of this philosophy, but I prefer Robert Heinlein's stuff (probably because I read it when I was an impressionable kid). The idea is that we should basically look after ourselves and do what we feel we want to do. Rand seems to go with telling society to shove it and then taking the consequences on the chin. Heinlein was more do what you like, but keep up a front of the prevailing social norms to avoid trouble, if those norms become too onerous then piss off somewhere else (normally space in his books, unfortunately that's not an option for us yet :)). The key thing for me in this philosophy is the live and let live element, if you want to be left to your own devices it's only fair that you don't interfere in other peoples affairs, so you don't go for social control.

2.) The 'Collectivist' viewpoint - The idea here is that you should do what's best for the group, and sacrifice your own selfish interest for the benefit of everybody else. The idea being that If we all do this the whole world gets better for everyone. I think the 'Collectivist' viewpoint stems from our evolutionary history of living is small tight knit social groups who needed to work together to survive. The trouble I have with the collectivist approach is that somebody has to decide what's best for the group, this was fine in small tribal groups of 30 to 50 individuals. Everybody knew everybody else, so you knew who to trust. In our modern and frankly unnaturally massive social groups the people who end up doing the deciding are normally the last people you'd want to be telling you how to live your life if you knew anything much about them. So this natural (and reasonable) tendency to social cooperation is twisted and abused as a method of control.

Rand created a 'collectivist' bogeyman in her book 'The fountainhead' http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Fountainhead#Ellsworth_Toohey it's worth a read although the sexual relationships are a bit odd (not as odd as the one's in Heinlein's books though!)

The way I see it societies ebb and flow between the individualistic and collectivist extremes, and we happen to be living in a time where we've been swinging in the collectivist direction.

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My first thought on this is house prices. There are now many tools available to buyers that influence where they wish to buy and 2 of these are Google maps and the crime maps. High crime levels reduce the value of houses, and close proximity to a pub also. Get rid of the pub and property prices can soar . But maybe I just spend too much time on this site.

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Quite honestly I may well be a silly hard of thinking idiot, so if I've gone wrong somewhere I'd be delighted to be set right, it'll be easier than sucking up the fact that our country is governed and policed by lazy, self-serving twats.

Your only question should be: who needs a state licence to serve alcohol?

The system has been around for about 120 years.

Alcohol production is a trivial process, and the demand is strong.

It won't take long for state authority to price itself into extinction.

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So, they clean away the current hot spots....how did they do that?...they had a person monitoring the stats....hot spots gone, what is that person going to do...keep monitoring for crime, for that is the agencys particular job...with the pubs gone, they notice its the car parks...better shut them down and add CCTV....crime falls again, where next?... High Street...better add patrols and CCTV..

Soon, they will want to monitor everything....

Just a minute......we are there already.....

Such is the inevitable mission creep of the controlling tyranny.....death by a thousand good intentions...PC and Diversity being top contributors.

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My first thought on this is house prices. There are now many tools available to buyers that influence where they wish to buy and 2 of these are Google maps and the crime maps. High crime levels reduce the value of houses, and close proximity to a pub also. Get rid of the pub and property prices can soar . But maybe I just spend too much time on this site.

I live close to a pub and I'm fearfully glad of it because if it closes it will be knocked down and become an enormous block of flats full of immigrants and chavs.

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I don't think the agents of control really want people out and about in places like pubs where a million great conversations are had, where you might end up chatting with strangers or getting to know someone else in the community.

I think they want everyone trudging round bland shopping malls or locked up in their home with the TV on telling them that we need to arm Al Qaeda in Syria and to watch Celebrity Big Brother.

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I don't think the agents of control really want people out and about in places like pubs where a million great conversations are had, where you might end up chatting with strangers or getting to know someone else in the community.

I think they want everyone trudging round bland shopping malls or locked up in their home with the TV on telling them that we need to arm Al Qaeda in Syria and to watch Celebrity Big Brother.

I warn you that you will be quiet–when the curfew of fear and the gibbet of unemployment make you obedient.

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They provide lots of carrots then beat you with a stick for taking a bite from it.....order = control.....not to be trusted....does not know what is good for them. ;)

edit: Spelling, wrong and missed out words as usual. :D

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I heard this and it also got my goat. Local policing strategy is something that has bothered me for years - I hadn't realised it had gone so far as lost mobiles leading to pub closures.

I spent a decade on my local council - and one of the reasons I stood down was no longer wanting to play a part in the removal of people's historic liberty.

And, while central government may have given local authorities the tools, it was the police who were the power. The problem was that the police would come and ask for dispersal orders, alcohol ban zones, pub closures etc and the old, traditional, law-abiding councillors would largely think "if the police want it, it must be good". And the (similarly old-time) local press would pillory you for turning down such requests.

Councillors were forgetting that policing today is not the same as in their youth. Success (and therefore promotion and careers) is measure by KPIs and crime figures. A pub closure would be bloody good for the police and as social impact and loss of local community are not part of their KPIs, they couldn't give a stuff about the wider issues.

From the police's POV, they want nothing better than for people to do nothing other than to stay at home and watch TV while entirely sober. And they'll use their influence to shutdown any activities that stand in the way of that aim. Hell, I even had to deal with them requesting that burger bars be refused planning permission on the basis that they would become "locations where people would aggregate" (in other words; community might develop).

Councils should stand up to this influence and vested interest in policy setting. The reason councils have the powers not the police is that their role *is* to balance various interests. The primary reason they fail to do so is that councils are almost entirely old codgers[1] who have a historic respect for the police that is no longer warranted.

[1] I was youngest when I was first elected. Still youngest when I left 10 years later. And, unless the demographic changes, would still be the youngest if I return after a 10 year sabbatical. Should add - I'm not some revolutionary lefty firebrand; I was a Tory and they did see fit to give me some big jobs and not keep me on the "back benches".

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There was a very minor fire round my way last week, really minor, you could piss it out.

3 fire trucks, 5 police, 5 community support offices and 3 paramedics showed up. It was outrageous really.

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The question I wanted to hear was, whether there was any evidence one way or t'other on whether a lot of the crime was in fact fraud: arrange to get your old or dead 'phone nicked for the insurance - or even just take it to the tip and report it nicked.

Are the networks offering perverse incentives (like, deals involving new for old renewal of stolen phones)? If so, is there any correlation between deals like that and the pub's crime figures?

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My first thought on this is house prices. There are now many tools available to buyers that influence where they wish to buy and 2 of these are Google maps and the crime maps. High crime levels reduce the value of houses, and close proximity to a pub also. Get rid of the pub and property prices can soar . But maybe I just spend too much time on this site.

As long as you visit the pub regularly! :lol:

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I'm generally someone who doesn't get angry, just calmly bears a grudge forever

Love that line :lol:

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There was a very minor fire round my way last week, really minor, you could piss it out.

3 fire trucks, 5 police, 5 community support offices and 3 paramedics showed up. It was outrageous really.

Remember Christnmas week 2010, when all the rivers froze over? This twit living in the rented house next to me went off on a week's holidays, leaving the heat off. Thawed out on Boxing Day, burst pipes started squirting, house goes up in smoke.

As you say, in come the happy firemen on triple time, put the fire out in 5 minutes. Tenant arrives back from holidays just as they're finishing up. No one hurt.

Now this is Northern Ireland, where you're expected to just get on with it? No - two hugely obese figures arrive in one of those enormous US camper vans, marked Mobile Social Support Unit, and each gives this idiot a hug, then they leave.

What a service.

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Woke up with a hangover yesterday, was chivvied out of bed as I'd promised the wife I'd take her to get her beauty treatments done.

WARNING WARNING WARNING The wife suddenly starting to frequent a beauty parlour after many years of never having done so is a sure sign that she is getting her pants off for somebody else and is about to leave you.

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Now this is Northern Ireland, where you're expected to just get on with it? No - two hugely obese figures arrive in one of those enormous US camper vans, marked Mobile Social Support Unit, and each gives this idiot a hug, then they leave.

:lol::lol::lol::lol: Please tell me this is 100% true

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WARNING WARNING WARNING The wife suddenly starting to frequent a beauty parlour after many years of never having done so is a sure sign that she is getting her pants off for somebody else and is about to leave you.

It's nothing out of the ordinary I assure you- I won't tell you what the treatment she was having is, but let's just say I'm in favour of it... :o

JTB- good post, thanks for the insight!

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It's nothing out of the ordinary I assure you- I won't tell you what the treatment she was having is, but let's just say I'm in favour of it...

TELL! TELL! TELL! TELL! TELL!

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I just don't listen to the BBC anymore. It's not worth the raised blood pressure.

They very often fail to ask blindingly obvious questions. For example, the World Service (I live abroad) did a report on a new Indian law to force employers to pay salaries into bank accounts rather than by cash. The whole pitch of the story was that this was an excellent idea because it would stop protection gangs taking cash from employees. Now, that may be true, but surely a blindingly obvious point also was that it made it much easier to collect taxes? Yet this wasn't even suggested in the report, let alone put to the government minister interviewed, even as a potential benefit of the scheme.

So one can only conclude that the reporter was either so dim he couldn't see this, or so lazy that he just accepted the Indian government's propaganda, or so biased in favour of statism that he didn't want to mention it.

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Soon the police may have the power to prevent licensed premises opening after a certain time.

The Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act will give local authorities the power to impose Early Morning Restriction Orders. Alternatively councils can impose a late night levy whereby all licensed premises opening after a certain time must contribute to the cost of policing and street pastors etc.

The cafe-bar culture envisioned when 24 hour drinking was brought in has failed to materialise, meaning police on the late shifts cannot sit in the station, but can be called out to pubs and clubs at any time of the night. Anecdotally, I think this has prevented the warzone feel which you used to get when every club and pub in town tipped out at the same time. The police seem to object to the late opening, because although there is less major disorder, the incidents are spaced throughout the night with no quiet lol between the last club closing and the early shift coming on. The police don't really like having to structure their resources around what people want to do, it is easier to restrict what people can do.

A couple of years ago I was asked to attend a safer neighbourhoods committee meeting where the police. council and local Primary Care Trust representatives were discussing alcohol, violence and public order. It was a real eye-opener how out of touch these people were. When the problems associated with the town centre were being discussed I asked if any of the people on the committee actually went out in the town centre. It turned out that none of them did, but they were quite happy to pontificate about the problems and how closing all the pubs (that the people who had elected them and were paying their wages enjoyed frequenting) was the logical way to deal with these problems.

In my reasonably frequent dealings with the police and people who work for the council, (and magistrates come to think of it) the prevalent mindset is a shockingly patronising view of the general public as inconvenient children who must be controlled for their own good. Ideally, I genuinely believe that the majority would impose some sort of curfew if they had the chance.

Just my 2c.

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A couple of years ago I was asked to attend a safer neighbourhoods committee meeting where the police. council and local Primary Care Trust representatives were discussing alcohol, violence and public order. It was a real eye-opener how out of touch these people were. When the problems associated with the town centre were being discussed I asked if any of the people on the committee actually went out in the town centre. It turned out that none of them did, but they were quite happy to pontificate about the problems and how closing all the pubs (that the people who had elected them and were paying their wages enjoyed frequenting) was the logical way to deal with these problems.

In my reasonably frequent dealings with the police and people who work for the council, (and magistrates come to think of it) the prevalent mindset is a shockingly patronising view of the general public as inconvenient children who must be controlled for their own good. Ideally, I genuinely believe that the majority would impose some sort of curfew if they had the chance.

Just my 2c.

A very accurate 2c, IM(direct and extensive)E.

I used to chair a lot of these community and police forums and while I have the greatest respect for (most of) the attendees as individuals, the collective was sometimes alarming - think Hot Fuzz. The enemy was "youth". As I wasn't that far removed from being a "youth", I was always at risk of coming across as a bit of a hoody-hugger.

The problem of out-of-touch councillors would be addressed if the job paid decently. Only the wealthy pensioned boomers can afford to do a full time job for less than minimum wage.

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